EVERY  time I see Joe Biden  board or descend a plane, my heart is in my mouth that he’ll fall. He’s done it before and he may well do it again. The thing is, can it be prevented? Nobody likes to see their leader come a cropper

But that said, navigating plane steps isn’t a key skill for an American president. In fact, you could be a wonderful  president while requiring a hoist to get you aboard. Franklin Delano Roosevelt was largely confined to a wheelchair during his years as President, but his New Deal dragged the US out of the Great Depression with federal work schemes, disability insurance and old-age pensions. Mind you, his wheel-chair was a secret the vast majority of Americans knew little about.

The fact is, we prefer our leaders to be healthy, and being young is frequently linked with health. John F Kennedy’s charm was closely related to his youth, and he projected an outdoor, healthy image, even though in fact he had chronic back-pain. Joe Biden manages to project an image of fitness but also, paradoxically, of frailty. 

Special counsel Robert Hur — appointed to investigate why classified documents from the Obama administration were found at Biden’s home and office in 2022 — has concluded his investigation by recommending no criminal charges. But he added that Biden was  “an elderly man with a poor memory”. Hur also suggested that Biden had forgotten when his son Beau died. 

 Joe didn’t like that: “How in the hell dare he raise that... I don’t need anyone to remind me when he [Beau] passed away.” 

But no sooner had Joe mounted the high moral ground  than Joe stumbled again, mentioning ‘Mexico’ when clearly he meant to say ‘ Egypt’.  

Most of us would rather he had got it right first time, but ultimately does it matter? If he’d taken a trip to Mexico and said things that clearly showed he thought he was in Egypt, that would be a cause for concern.

But his opponents are pressing hard on the “He’s too old!” button. Sloganeering is fun, but it isn’t always helpful. Leaders deserve to be judged by what they’ve done and what they plan to do.  So how were Biden’s past four years? 

The short answer is, pretty good. He was responsible for  a $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package for a network of bridges and roads, airports, public transport, national broadband internet, as well as waterways and energy systems throughout the US. He delivered. a $1.9 trillion Covid relief deal. He  re-joined the international Paris Climate Accord which Trump had scrapped. And he has brought US unemployment rates to their lowest since 1969. 

On  the negative side – yep, you’ve guessed it – there’s Gaza. Biden has shown unswerving support for Israel, providing that state with money and munitions on a huge scale. In recent days, he has murmured that Israel is going a bit “over the top” in Gaza. The term “over the top”  to describe the slaughter of innocent civilians – men, women, children  - is frankly obscene. Joe Biden may be proud of his Irish background, but not too many people are proud of his actions on the Middle East. He could turn off the armaments and funding tap to Israel and end Netanyahu’s genocide tomorrow, but he hasn’t. That’s a hugely negative judgement on Biden in foreign affairs. 
But here’s the thing: in November, Americans will almost certainly have to make a binary choice between Joe Biden and Donald Trump. Which man do you think has the greater potential for future good or evil?
There is certainly a case which says the Democrats should have chosen a much younger presidential candidate. They haven’t. Which means that, like it or lump it, for Americans in November it's Joe Biden or Donald Trump. Viewed in those terms, most sane Americans will vote for Biden. The question is, are there enough sane American voters? We’ll know when the results come in November.
Meanwhile, Joe, for God sake, for humanity’s sake, for the sake of your political future, quit shipping weapons to the blood-crazed monsters in Israel.